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S Asia 100 Hindu Families In Pak Want To Migrate To India


1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
AMRITSAR: More than one hundred Hindu families of Baluchistan province of Pakistan are making efforts to migrate to India after becoming the target of extremists and fundamentalist groups who kidnap them for ransom. Five Hindu families have already migrated from Balochistan's Mastung district to India and six more families are trying to seek asylum elsewhere.

These startling revelations were made by Pakistan's former federal minister for human rights Ansar Burney while talking to TOI over phone from Baluchistan on Sunday.

Burney who is also United Nations Expert Advisor on Human Rights claims to have visited several Baloch dominated districts including Quetta, Nushki, Dera Allah Yar, Mastung, Khuzdar, Qalat, Jaffarabad, Lasbela, Kharan, Sibi, Kachhi and territories inhabited by Marri and Bugti tribes where Hindus have been living for centuries - following the kidnapping of Maharaj Lakhim Chand Garji (85) by extremist and fundamentalist groups from Kali Mata Mandir in Qalat on December 21.

Garji is 'Maharaja' of Kali Mata Mandir for past 60 years. Burney claimed that despite threat to his life he had visited Qalat and other disturbed places especially religious places of Christians, Hindus and Sikhs in Baluchistan and met people who raised their serious concern on alleged illegitimate and dishonest attitude of some fundamentalist and extremist elements including influential people.

Burney alleged that many influential people in the Federal and Provincial governments besides several tribal leaders were involved in kidnapping of Hindus and Sikhs for ransom. "Several members of the Hindu community had been kidnapped for ransom under the patronage of Sardars and some government influential people" he added. However, he refused to divulge their names.

Criticizing the provincial government he said, "Government has failed to protect the lives and properties of Hindus and Sikhs as the incidents of kidnapping for ransom have become common. Several members of the Hindu community have been kidnapped for ransom and government has not been able to trace or recover them. In many cases family of victims had paid huge ransom for their release."

He said, "The Hindu community of Balochistan had been hit hardest by incidents of abduction for ransom and extortion. 291 people abducted last year were Hindus. Most of the victims were released after paying a huge amount as ransom to kidnappers who are mostly close people of tribal leaders 'Sardars'. Relatives of the victims are reluctant to disclose how much money they paid to the kidnappers, fearing that they will be targeted again."

Burney said that one Suresh Kumar wanted to migrate though his family had lived in Baluchistan for almost a century. "Most of the people are trying to migrate because of the deteriorating law and order situation," he added. "The situation was worse in Naseerabad district, where half the 28 people kidnapped in 2010 were from the minority community.In such circumstances several Hindu families has already migrated to India and others are planning to leave the country," he added. He alleged that one Juhary Lal, a well-known trader, was abducted about 16 months ago in Naal area of Khuzdar district and his whereabouts were still unknown.

Burney demanded from government for the safe and early recovery of Maharaj Lakhim Chang Garji. He is considered to be one of Pakistan's most revered Hindu spiritual leaders. He was kidnapped on December 21. Burney also appealed to his kidnappers to at least allow the volunteers of the Ansar Burney International Trust to provide insulin injections and other medicines to Lakhim Chand Garji who was a diabetic.

He said that in the last one month more than five Hindu religious persons including a 10 year old child had been kidnapped and the government had totally failed to protect them.

He urged upon the Federal as well as Baluchistan government to take stern action against the fundamentalists and extremist elements those involved in kidnapping and killing of innocent Hindus, Sikhs and Christians in Pakistan and harassing them in the name of blasphemy act.




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